Reflections on Photokina 2018
Photokina in 2018 was different from 2016 mainly in following the nearly predictable direction that photography and the equipment is going. Nowadays smart devices do most photography. In contrast, most digital photo equipment appears to lack 'smart solutions'. Real connectivity is still far away on most cameras, except those embedded in phones and tablets. Add to that the recent changes in file size, the need for high performance memory cards on the high end (professional) products (Nikon's D850 and D5 come to mind) and one can build a case for a growing connectivity gap.
Incremental improvements in digital photograph are becoming smaller, focusing on practicality. Real image quality is pretty high and most photography customers can barely notice the difference. Although photographers may notice the minimal difference, mainly in processors and auto-focus but is it worth to upgrade? The case can be made to a professional photographer, as I noticed that the post-processing adjustments are becoming minimal. High-end professional cameras produce photos with general good contrast and require minimal editing work. Amazingly none of the camera producers seem to point that out.
What is the future for a fair operating in this environment? These places are often meeting grounds, but one must wonder if they can keep on attracting those that are interested in technological progress. Do these still need Photokina?. The interconnected world has moved on.
Noticeable was a very large stands by Fujifilm who promotes heavily on the instant (and connectivity), in addition of course to Canon and Nikon who can hardly afford not being there. For now at least. At the end of the fair there was a surprise announcement about a photokina edition 2019. That was quickly postponed. There is progress, but not this fast. Certainly not judging by what was on offer at the last edition.
Keywords: auto-focus, cameras, Canon, connectivity, D5, D850, digital, equipment, Fujifilm, high-end, Nikon, photographer, photography, Photokina, post-processing, professional
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